In the last few years, ride-share companies like Uber, have exploded across the country. According to the Chicago Tribune, the number of registered vehicles for companies like Uber, quadrupled from 2014 to 2017. Ride-shares involve drivers who are paid for transporting passengers in the driver’s own car at a reduced rate. Payment and booking rides happen through an app on your phone, making ride-share companies more convenient and less expensive than traditional taxis. But along with that convenience come some risks.
The Chicago Uber accident attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC are committed to holdings rideshare companies accountable when their drivers' negligence results in an accident with injuries to passengers or other motorists. If you or a family member was injured in a car accident involving an Uber vehicle, we encourage you to contact our office for a free review of your legal options for recovery.
Risks Faced by Uber Passengers and Other Motorists Regarding Issues
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC is committed to providing legal representation for Uber passengers and other motorists injured in collisions with Uber-operated cars.
Examples of potential Uber accident cases would involve:
- Uber passengers injured or killed in accidents caused by the negligence of Uber drivers and other motorists
- Uber passengers injured when then enter or exit the vehicle
- Pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists injured in collisions with Uber cars
- Other motorists injured due to the negligence of an Uber driver
- Uber drivers injured in collisions caused by other drivers
Chicago and National Uber Growth Statistics
While it grosses over $3 billion today, it started with more humble origins. Founded in 2009 in San Francisco, the creators aimed to provide a lower-cost alternative to cabs and other private driving services. They did this through a number of mechanisms including passenger pooling.
Now, they have blossomed into one of the biggest companies on earth with operations in multiple countries. They offer multiple products including peer ridesharing, ride hailing, and food service delivery among others. By establishing an app on peoples’ smartphones and controlling the as aspects of a ride, Uber has also entered the realm of personal injury law when people get injured or killed with its vehicles.
- Globally, almost 100 million people uses the app on monthly basis.
- Uber generates almost $15 billion each quarter.
- There are almost 15 million Uber trips each day.
- Nearly eighty percent of the time in Chicago, riders travel by themselves as opposed to using the pool feature.
- Most trips in Chicago cost riders between $5 and $10.
- The most popular areas in Chicago for Uber trips included Old Town, Gold Coast, River North, and Streeterville (these had roughly 3 million pick-ups and drop offs from November 2018 to April 2019).
- The Loop had roughly 1.5 million pick-ups and drop offs in that same time period.
- The United Center area, Fulton Market, and Illinois Medical District (Near West Side) also had about 1.5 million pick-ups and drop offs in that same time period.
- There are tens of thousands of Uber drivers in the Chicagoland area with 4 million Uber drivers globally.
- Almost 75% of Uber drivers are male.
Why Uber Accident Cases are Different than Other Car Accidents
If you are injured in an accident involving an Uber vehicle, it is important to know that your case is different than other types of car accidents involving private individuals. When an Uber driver injures his passengers or other motorists, you will not only have a claim against the driver, but also Uber itself.
As the employer of people driving vehicles controlled by technologies operated by Uber, Uber is liable to pay for resulting injuries. This can be a positive factor in recovering full value of an injury case as there are liability policies in place that are typically more substantial than those with a private driver’s insurance coverage.
Uber Accident Injury FAQs
What Liability Insurance Limits Cover Chicago Uber Accidents?
Uber publicly acknowledges to riders that it has $1 million in insurance coverage for their vehicles when the vehicle is being used to transport customers or when the driver is en route to pick up a ride. The full insurance coverage Uber vehicles carry is not public information as this information is not disclosed unless a court orders the company to do so.
What Type of Compensation can I Recover in an Uber Injury Case?
The specific types of damages you might recover in an Uber accident are similar to those from other car crashes. After proving causation, you can seek monetary damages for your current and future injuries from the accident. This might include:
- Medical expenses
- Physical therapy
- Lost income
- Attorney’s fees
- Disability accommodations for your home or car
- Medical devices
- Car rental fees
- Property damage
Although more difficult to ascertain, you may also be able to recover compensation for intangible losses such as:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of full life
For more information on damages available in Chicago Uber accident claims and lawsuits, contact Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC for a free case review.
How can I Protect Myself While Riding in an Uber Car?
Also, if a driver’s use of a smart phone while driving is making you feel uncomfortable or unsafe, ask him to stop. Your safety isn’t worth a five-star rating on the Uber app.
Finally, here’s a simple checklist of things to do to keep safe while riding an Uber across Chicago:
- Always try and stay alert and avoid distractions.
- Make sure to have your phone charged at a normal level.
- Don’t offer any personal information about yourself.
- If you’re travelling with a friend in a pool, confirm that that person got to their destination okay.
- Report any inappropriate behavior you witness from the driver.
What Should I do After a Chicago Uber Accident?
The steps you take immediately after a Chicago Uber Accident can drastically impact your ability to recover later. Below, we have listed some things you should do right after you find yourself involved in such an incident. However, there will be other things to do, but taking these steps will protect yourself from other mistakes. Plus, they will allow you to make whatever claim you wish at a later date.
- First, seek medical treatment and ensure that you don’t have any life-threatening injuries.
- If you’re able to, document the scene of the accident, the drivers involved, licenses and registration.
- Write notes of anything that you remember observing before and during the accident.
- Notify Uber. Let them know that you were a passenger involved in an accident with their driver and ask for insurance information for both your driver’s personal and Uber coverage.
- Contact an attorney. It’s always best to speak with an experienced Chicago Uber attorney before you attempt to contact any insurance company.
- Document all medical treatment, symptoms, medical expenses, lost work time and other damages.
Do I Need an Attorney for an Uber Injury Case?
Uber and ride-share accident claims are complicated, involving multiple insurance companies and often claims against multiple parties. While insurance companies are very willing to negotiate with accident victims, they will typically offer lower amounts or try to get you to settle for a lump sum before you know the full extent of your medical bills or other damages. Before speaking with an insurance adjuster, you should consult an experienced Uber accident attorney who can investigate the accident and evaluate your case. You don’t want to end up with multiple medical liens and no way to ensure that your claims will be paid.
RIL can help maximize the value of your case. Our attorneys are well-versed in negotiating with insurance companies for settlements involving vehicle operated by Uber and Lyft. We can also negotiate reduced medical liens and help maximize your recovery.
Have There Been any Lawsuits for Personal Injury Recently Filed Against Uber?
Yes, below are some examples of lawsuits people in the Chicagoland area have filed against Uber to recover compensation for personal injury and wrongful death.
FAMILY SUES UBER AFTER 8-CAR CRASH OUTSIDE OF CHICAGO.
This lawsuit was filed in November 2018. The plaintiffs sued in Cook County, Illinois. They targeted Uber and a delivery company. The incident occurred on an exit off of I-90. A mother and her daughter hailed a car via Uber. As it went to their destination, a trucker rear-ended them. They sustained multiple personal injuries. Both needed to be transported to local hospitals. However, doctors deemed their injuries as non-critical. Nevertheless, they have brought suit against Uber and the delivery company. The family claims that both acted negligently and are responsible for the injuries of the mother and child.
Specifically, the plaintiffs cite the defendants with a failure to control their speeds, keep a proper lookout, and avoid the incident. For damages, they claim compensation for their medical, legal, and other losses.
CHICAGO FIRM BRINGS SUIT AGAINST UBER AFTER THE DEATH OF THEIR SON.
In June of 2018, an Uber driver shot Hyum Kim. Kim died from his injuries. His family argued that this was the last thing he could have expected as he hopped into the vehicle. He merely wanted to reach his destination using the ride-hailing mobile app. Uber has policies against the carrying and use of firearms by its drivers. However, the family maintains that the company did not enforce those policies. They claim it was grossly negligent. If they are successful in this argument, they will be able to sue the company for the intentional acts of the driver. This means the plaintiffs will be able to get wrongful death damages including lost support and companionship, suffering, and expenses among other things.
SEVEN PLAINTIFFS JOIN CLASS-ACTION SUIT AGAINST UBER.
Reports emerge from a recent filing of more abuse, harassment, and kidnapping by Uber drivers. Seven women joined an ongoing class-action lawsuit against the company. They each claim various physical, emotional, and emotional harms. These stem from the conduct of the drivers. The suit targets the company itself because, in the plaintiffs’ view, it failed to maintain a system to protect riders. They either knew of the danger certain drivers posed or recklessly ignored it. Lawyers maintain the goal of this case is to get justice for those men and women harassed and assaulted. Also, they want to stop Uber from forcing victims to arbitrate the matter rather than going through the court system.
LOGAN SQUARE WOMAN SUES AFTER SEXUAL ASSAULT.
This sexual assault case was recently filed in Cook County, Illinois. It kicked off after a woman requested an Uber from the Uptown neighborhood of Chicago. She wanted to go home to her apartment in Logan Square. Unfortunately, things did not go as she planned. The driver groped her, demanded her phone number, and then would not let her leave until she consented to other demands. The woman complained of anguish, pain, and other physical and mental injuries. Her Chicago lawsuit contends that both the driver and the company are responsible. She seeks compensation from both parties. Also, she states that her effort hopefully will prevent similar abuse to other Uber riders.
PARENTS SUE UBER AFTER FATAL SPRINGFIELD, IL MOTORCYCLE CRASH.
This recent lawsuit was filed in Sangamon County, Illinois. It began after an Uber driver crashed into a motorcycle. Both the driver and passenger of the bike died. The parents for the passenger sued Uber and the motorcyclist. The complaint suggested the motorcyclist was speeding. Also, it complained that the Uber driver was distracted by Uber’s mobile app on his phone. In this way, they were able to target the company itself. The case is for wrongful death. That means the plaintiffs believe the defendants wrongfully caused the death of their loved one. Further, they think the defendants should pay for the costs, expenses, suffering, and pain that came from that death. In total, they ask for more than $50,000 for these damages.
Have There Been any Personal Injury Settlements Against Uber?
The truth is that there is very little information about personal injury and wrongful death settlements involving Uber vehicles. The company does a good job resolving cases relatively quickly and privately with most cases involving confidentially clauses. Consequently, most of the details involved in these cases will never be made public.
FAMILY SUES AFTER TRAGIC DEATH IN CROSSWALK.
This settlement arose after a heartbreaking accident in 2013. An Uber driver ran over a little girl in a crosswalk. The accident took place in San Francisco, California. The young girl’s brother was struck in the same incident. He did not die from his injuries. The family brought suit. They sought wrongful death damages. The driver was using the Uber app at the time of the crash. Presumably, he could have been engaging the device and not paying attention to the road. Whatever the case, both sides reached a confidential agreement to end the litigation in 2015. The family received an undisclosed settlement.
SETTLEMENT FOR FATAL ACCIDENT INVOLVING SELF-DRIVING CAR.
In early 2018, a young woman was hit by a self-driving Uber car. There was a human backup driver, but no person was controlling it at the time of the crash. The incident occurred as the woman walked her bike across the street. Without warning, the car came in and hit here. The incident generated a lot of attention across the country. This publicity and the obvious culpability put the onus on the company to settle. Not long after, it did reach an agreement with the deceased woman’s family. They received a private settlement for their losses and the woman’s pain.
MAN RECEIVES $260,000 SETTLEMENT IN FLORIDA UBER CRASH.
This accident occurred in Miami, Florida. It involved an Uber driver and another car. The latter made a left-hand turn and T-boned the Uber vehicle. The driver sustained a broken vertebra at the T3 point. He did not end up having surgery. However, he did suffer from a lot of pain and aggravation due to the incident. Also, he piled up almost $100,000 in medical bills. Attorneys for the victim sued the other driver. They successfully pursued an insurance settlement. That got him money for his costs as well as his pain.
$1.9 MILLION SETTLEMENT FOR UBER SEXUAL ASSAULT VICTIMS.
Dozens of sexual assault victims brought suit against Uber a few ago. In 2018, Uber decided to settle. Each of them were to set to receive tens of thousands of dollars. The allegations described a hostile and unsafe environment which the company controlled. This space allowed the assaults to occur the plaintiffs contended. Going forward, the ride-sharing app will not force victims into arbitration or NDA agreements. This will allow people to bring claims in the open light of day instead of within secretive proceedings.
Contact Our Chicago Uber Accident Lawyers Today
The experienced Chicago Uber injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers have handled thousands of complex car crash cases and can help you determine your best course of action. Contact us today for a free initial consultation to discuss your claim. If we can’t help you, you don’t owe us anything. We don’t take a fee until we recover compensation on your behalf.
If you or a loved one was the victim of a sexual assault in an Uber or Lyft vehicle, view our informational page here.